BORIS Johnson today stared down calls for him to quit on the back of his latest Partygate woes despite a brewing Tory rebellion.
Scrambling to rescue his India trip from headaches back at home, he swatted away speculation he will be forced out of No10 in the coming months.
Boris Johnson speaks during a press conference in New Delhi[/caption]
The PM is in India to forge closer ties with the South Asian powerhouse[/caption]
This morning he met Indian PM Narendra Modi to grease the wheels for a post-Brexit trade deal to be done by Diwali in October.
But the end of his two-day mission was overshadowed by developments in the Partygate storm 4,500 miles away in Britain.
Asked if he was “absolutely sure” he would still be Prime Minister by that date, Mr Johnson replied emphatically: “Yes”.
Speaking at a press conference in New Delhi he added: “I think that what people want in our country is for the Government to get on and focus on the issues on which we were elected, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
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Yesterday MPs voted to launch a Commons inquiry into whether Mr Johnson deliberately lied to Parliament through his Partygate denials.
The Privileges Committee’s investigation means the PM now faces three separate probes, along with the Met Police’s and Sue Gray’s.
But welcoming the new investigation he staunchly declared: “I have, frankly, nothing to hide.”
Allies rallied round the embattled PM this morning and promised he would weather the latest storm.
Minister and ultra BoJo loyalist Conor Burns said: “There is no question of the Prime Minister going.
“He remains confident that when people can see the full context of what happened it will be clear that he was straightforward, he said to the House in good faith that he believed the rules were followed.
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“He is looking forward to this ending. He is looking forward to drawing this to a conclusion, for it to be examined fully so that we can move on to the things people are genuinely concerned about.”
But the PM will fly back into choppy political waters in Westminster as disgruntled Tories start sharpening their knives.
Senior Conservative Tobias Ellwood said today a leadership contest was now “inevitable” and urged his colleagues to stop drinking “the Kool-aid”.
Tory MP Steve Baker yesterday joined the rebels calling for Mr Johnson to throw in the towel.
Issuing a warning to the PM he was living on borrowed time, he warned: “The gig’s up.”
Mr Burns snapped back at the PM’s critics: “If he stepped off Westminster Bridge and walked down the surface of the River Thames, they would say he couldn’t swim.”
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